Family Photos Prep Guide

FAQ for family photo sessions

You officially booked your session! I can not wait to get started and meet the rest of your family. So, what's next?

Here are a few tips to make sure your kiddos are camera ready and showing their loving personality in the photography session!


Make sure your children have a great night sleep before the session or a nap if it is an afternoon/evening session. This will make sure they are happy during the session! Maybe even bring their favorite snacks in case they get hungry during the session.


All children get distracted. If you have their favorite toy to hold behind the photographer, this will bring out genuine smiles and their true personalities to capture on camera!


All family sessions need to have a moment with just the parents together. During this time, I recommend having a friend to watch the children (if you have little ones) while you are distracted taking photos! This will make it stress free and allow you both to relax for the moment to enjoy a private photo session with you two!


The best photographs are often the ones where everyone is engaged or interacting with each other. Understand that not every picture needs to have everyone looking at the camera and smiling at the same time. If you are engaged as a family and loving on each other, your smile with be natural and create a relaxed atmosphere. These are the photographs that you will cherish most because they depict your family connection and your love. Maybe play a game of tag, butterfly kissing on cheeks, or tossing your little one in the air (catch them of course!)


The most successful family sessions have incorporated an activity that the family loves to do together. This engages the kiddos and brings an authentic smile to your face. Other ideas include ice skating, picnic, flying kites, playing card games, football, piggyback rides, races, bike riding, hiking, singing, the ideas are endless. When families are engaged in doing something that they love together, I will have the opportunity to take some beautiful and authentic photographs.


Avoid being “matchy-matchy”! The pictures are supposed to represent you. Let’s face it, no one matches clothes perfectly anymore in family photos. Just be sure the colors you each wear complement each other. Using a pop of color to tie all the outfits together will help them flow well. Neutral colors look gorgeous and effortless on camera (Blues, creams, blush pink, grey, brown all work with each other). Just remember to be you and wear what makes you feel comfortable. Flowing dresses (maybe even little lace) can give a softness on camera and add to the comfort of the picture. It can give movement to the photo which works better for candid shots. Solid colored clothes flow better together. If there is a patterned shirt you love, then make sure the other people are wearing a solid color so the patterns do not clash. If you are a heels type gal, be sure to bring flip flops too for those walks in between locations. We want to make sure you are comfortable and having fun!


No one likes a camera in their face. This session is not about me guiding you through standard poses (yes, I will give some guidance). It’s about your family walking down a gorgeous path or beach talking & holding each other while I stand in the background to capture the moments. Don’t be afraid to feel like a kid again. Tickle each other, snuggle, or even dance with each other.


Don’t feel awkward because no one is judging you. I am there to capture the love between your family that is already there and ensure that you feel comfortable. If you are goofy, or do something embarrassing, it will never leave that session. My lips are sealed. Your trust is the most important part. If you trust me, I won’t let you down!

Check out my blog posts for more prep tips.

Tips for pumping your kids up for your photography session


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“Family is not an important thing. It's everything."                        - Michael J. Fox

About Alabaster Photos

I am a portrait photographer, specializing in newborn, maternity, seniors & family sessions. Serving the greater New Richmond, WI area. 

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